Found across all of Greater Lincolnshire arable ﬁeld margins are a key feature of the farming landscape. Field margins are both practical, making it easier to cultivate a ﬁeld and desirable, preventing pesticide spray drift from entering watercourses for example.
Arable ﬁeld margins are important for wildlife as they are now the main place where scarce arable plants can thrive. Depending on the type of margin they may also be important for a range of other wildlife such as invertebrates, including pollinators, and ground nesting birds and small mammals. For more on the description of arable ﬁeld margins and their status in Greater Lincolnshire see the Farmland and Grassland Nature Strategy page
There are various types of arable ﬁeld margin for example cultivated, low-input margins; margins sown to provide food for wild birds; margins sown to provide pollen and nectar for invertebrates; permanent grassy margins. Each of these will look diﬀerent and will look diﬀerent again on diﬀerent soil types. Despite these diﬀerences for each margin type a site in good condition should have varying degrees of grasses, ﬂowering plants and fewer weeds that should be relatively recognisable after visits to several sites.
The following are links to good practice on managing ﬁeld margins for wildlife. Some of these are speciﬁcally arable ﬁeld margins and some are generic. Field margins can be managed for a variety of species groups and the information, in alphabetical order, below reﬂects this.
Agricology - Field margins, hedgerows, woodland and scrub pdf
Buglife - Cereal field margins
The RSPB - Advice For Farmers | Arable Field Margins